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Life Learning Center’s first graduation ceremony of ’23 celebrates those who have overcome barriers

Life Learning Center will host its first graduation ceremony of 2023, celebrating the Members who have completed LLC’s transformational skills program, Foundations for a Better Life, on Saturday, March 25.

The mission of Life Learning Center is to deliver an innovative holistic, integrated continuum of education and care to assist individuals overcome challenges and barriers, allowing them to step up to their highest potential. By helping people learn, secure, and sustain a better way of living through gainful employment, LLC is building a caring and serving community.

The graduation ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. at 20 West 18th St. Covington. Immediately following the ceremony will be a luncheon celebration. The event is open to the public and community members are encouraged to attend; however, the meal is reserved for only those individuals who RSVP in advance. RSVP’s can be made at https://forms.gle/t994pmXc8CgowurVA and must be received by March 24.

Life Learning Center’s transformational skills program, Foundations for a Better Life, focuses on addressing five domains of life: Physical, Financial, Spiritual, Emotional and Relational. This essential skills curriculum assists low-income, unemployed, and underemployed individuals identify and overcome the barriers they are facing. Enrollees stemming from a diverse range of referral sources participate in an application and interview process to determine program eligibility. At intake, more than eighty data points are collected to capture the full scope of needs of each individual. Upon acceptance into the program, applicants are identified as “Candidates.” Before, during, and after the program, Candidates access a plethora of Care Continuum services to mitigate barriers as deemed appropriate. Once they complete the transformational skills program, commit to a substance-free lifestyle and secure full-time employment, Candidates become “Members” and they are Members for life. The transition to Member status is the focus of the graduation ceremony, celebrating the completion of the rigorous, transformational program.

Life Learning Center aims to expand beyond connecting individuals with employment; individuals experiencing substance use disorder require transformational change that involves a conscious effort, revealing many barriers preventing those in poverty from moving forward. In addition, LLC serves as a focal point of resources for community-based recovery support, including peer support, a diverse array of recovery support groups, employment supports, and life skills training necessary for employment retention.

Historically, Life Learning Center has delivered The Foundations for a Better Life™ program over a 12-week period with new cohorts enrolling the first Thursday of each month. In order to boost retention and increase graduation rates, in 2023, LLC initiated a new model in which cohorts begin more frequently. Represented in this graduation ceremony will be individuals who matriculated through this new model; as high as 82% of those who started in January will be celebrating the completion of the program thanks to this enhanced delivery model.

On March 25, guests will witness a traditional graduation ceremony; Graduates will don caps and gowns and be recognized with Pomp and Circumstance. In reality, this is the first time many of these individuals will have completed something meaningful, making the ceremony that much more significant.

Honored speakers include two representatives from the graduating class as well as Simon Chinnamuthu, from Madison Avenue Christian Church, a community partner of Life Learning Center.

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